Carrots are among the most difficult to store during winter. She is very capricious and whimsical to external conditions. Fungus often appears on the fruits, causing rotting, due to which it is not possible to preserve the crop.
What can you do to keep the root vegetable fresh and tasty until next season? Should the sand be wet or dry for this? Under what conditions and temperature should carrots be stored in the sand?
We will consider the answers to these questions in detail in our article. We also recommend watching a useful and interesting video on this topic.
What is this plant?
Carrots are a biennial plant that forms a rosette of leaves and a root crop in the first year of life, and a seed bush and seeds in the second year of life. Distributed everywhere, including in Mediterranean countries. Both the root crops themselves (for food) and the seeds from which the infusion and extracts are made are used.
Carrots are very rich in vitamins and minerals... In terms of content, some of them are superior to other vegetables, milk and even meat.
- B vitamins;
- vitamin C;
- fatty oil;
- essential oil.
The benefits of carrots do not diminish after heat treatmenton the contrary, new unique properties appear in it. Cooking reduces the amount of lipids, proteins and dietary fiber. This makes it easier for the body to digest. B vitamins and carotenoids remain the same. With regular use of boiled vegetables, intestinal function and the immune system improve.
Raw carrots are low in calories, making them essential for a variety of diets. To maintain good vision, you need to eat 200 grams of carrots daily.
Suitability for long-term storage
Unfortunately for many gardeners, this vegetable has a very thin and delicate skin.... The root crop begins to deteriorate and rot at the slightest violation of its integrity due to the ingress of bacteria and fungi. One of the important rules for high-quality storage is the absence of damage on the peel and the choice of special, late-ripening and mid-ripening carrots.
Attention: Rosal, Samson, Typhoon, Gribovchanin F1, Monanta, Canada F1, Mango F1, and many other similar varieties are perfectly stored.
Under inappropriate storage conditions, carrots will rot or sprout. To avoid loss of yield, it is important to prepare a suitable room before planting root crops. Some of the prerequisites are:
- preliminary removal of the old crop;
- disinfection of the storage room;
- whitewashing of walls;
The ideal temperature for storing carrots is from 0 to +3 degrees... Humidity is not higher than 96%. Only well-dried vegetables without tops and signs of spoilage should be removed to the basement or boxes. When preserving the tops of root crops, moisture and vitamins are lost.
Varieties with shortened root crops deteriorate the fastest.
Can it be stored in a sandy environment in a basement or cellar?
Storing carrots in the sand is one of the most popular ways among summer residents.which have free-standing basements, cool cellars and garage pits. The method is so widespread that, rather, the question arises, how to keep the vegetable without sand? This method is popular because of the ability of the sandy environment to reduce the evaporation of moisture from the carrots, thereby inhibiting the development of rot.
It also provides a constant temperature, which contributes to excellent preservation of root crops. Therefore, it is not only possible to use sand, but also necessary if you want to enjoy a rich harvest of useful root crops all winter.
Should it be dry or wet?
What kind of sand is needed and is best suited for storage in a cellar - dry or wet? Is it possible to hope that the carrots will lie in wet until spring?
Of course, it is better to moisturize the sandy storage environment.... This will keep the vegetable juicy for a long time. It also helps to maintain the optimum temperature.
Advantages and disadvantages
Among the features of this method, it should be noted that the sand should not be too wet. You can check this by squeezing it in your hand - water should not flow from it and it should not crumble. As it dries, the sand layer is slightly moistened.
The indisputable advantages of using sand are:
- "Warming" carrots in a cold cellar, or cooling with the penetration of a large amount of warm air.
- Pulling moisture away from itself, in order to avoid the formation of rot.
- Long shelf life - from 6 to 8 months.
The disadvantages include the need to thoroughly rinse the roots before use.... There are also quite significant expenditures of time and effort.
To use this method of laying root crops for the winter, it will be necessary to acquire suitable containers and water. For these purposes, wooden containers, boxes with a capacity of 15-17 kg or ordinary buckets are suitable. The volume of water depends on the amount of the crop: for 1 box - 1.5-2 liters, for 1 bucket - 1 liter.
For this storage method, only clayey sand is suitable.... It is better not to use the river at all.
How to properly preserve a vegetable?
For better preservation of root crops, you need to adhere to the following points:
- Before storing carrots, be sure to dry them in the shade by holding them in the air for 2-3 days.
- The tops must be cut flush with the head to avoid germination.
- For storage, it is worth choosing fruits of medium and large size, without damage or cracks.
- It is important not to store any flawed carrots. It is better to let the spoiled root vegetable first of all for salting cabbage or food.
- When storing in a box, the bottom must be covered with cellophane or any film. Pre-make several holes in it for air intake.
- Cover the bottom of the box with a layer of sand of 2-3 centimeters.
- Arrange the carrots so that the roots do not touch each other. This is important as the carrots must breathe.
- Pour a layer of sand about 10 centimeters on top.
- Alternate in this way until the full volume of the container is used.
- It is best to close the top with a lid.
When storing in a bucket, it is better to fill the bottom with dry sand, with a layer of about 10 centimeters... Stick the carrot with the cut head up. Cover with wet sand on top.
Watch a video about storing carrots in the sand:
Sawdust or moss can be an alternative filler when storing carrots in boxes.
Problems can arise if the crop was grown in soil with a high content of nitrogen and organic fertilizers. Also, abundant watering and late harvesting have a detrimental effect - all this will affect the storage quality of carrots. Of the possible diseases, white and black rot can bring great harm to the fruit.
The main sign of infection:
- rotting of the top;
- the appearance of dark spots and transverse stripes on the peel with the formation of voids under them.
For these reasons, the pulp becomes rotten and the carrots quickly deteriorate. The source of the disease is infected planting material or old crops in the basement.
It is worth noting that infection will spread faster in high humidity and high temperatures in the basement or cellar. Rot develops in foci and quickly passes from diseased root crops to healthy ones.
Important: It is necessary to notice the first signs in a timely manner and discard the infected fruits.
Storing carrots in a sandy environment is a time-tested technology with important features... The sand actually negates the risk of the onset of rotting processes, maintains an optimal temperature, and preserves the juiciness and taste of the fruit.
If all the recommendations are followed, the roots will remain fresh for 6-8 months.